What is a Pool Pump

The Best Pool Pump To Buy in 2019

How to Choose the Best Pool pump?

One of the most common question for pool owners is which pool pump they should buy for their pool. To make life a bit easier for you, we will discuss in this review which pump is the best for your pool. First of all, the 3 most popular pool pumps manufacturers are :

  • Intex
  • Pentair
  • Hayward

95% of all pool pumps sold in the USA are from these companies. So how to pick the best pool pump?

In general, Intex pumps are known for their excellent value, they cost between $50-$200 and have a very decent quality. The drawback is that these pumps can’t be repaired when they break down so you will have to buy a new one, which can be annoying in the middle of the summer.

The best-selling Intex pool pump is the Intex Krystal Clear Sand Filter Pump, which is rated 4,5 stars out of 5 on Amazon. The pump costs only $163.

You can read our full review of this pool pump here.

Secondly, if you want to go for a good quality pool pump, we recommend opting for Hayward pumps. Their pricing averages between $150-$300 and are also rated 4 stars out of 5 on Amazon.

You can read our full review of their pool pumps here.

Last but not least, if money is not the issue and you want to go for the best quality then we recommend buying a Pentair pool pump. These pumps have fantastic durability and quality but their prices range from $400 to $900.

You can read our full review of their pool pumps here.

Below we discuss 6 other great pool pumps worth considering.

Some top rated pool pumps are the Hayward, Columbia and Blue Wave brands that come in different types. The pump is driven by the electric motor: when we say “pump” it is understood that it is the assembly of the pump and the electrically driven motor.

These pumps use impellers to move or circulate water and other fluids. Pool pumps are classified as either above-ground or in the ground.
This pool pump reviews will certainly give light to those who are confused or do not understand how pumps operate and their uses.

Pool pumps and its motors come in various capacities or power (horsepower- HP), voltage rating (V), flow rate (gallon per minute- GPM), speed of rotation (revolution per minute- RPM) and connection (single or three-phase).
The rated voltage is dependent upon where the pump is manufactured or its intended market. Like the United States, where its domestic rated voltage is between 110-120 volts while countries like Australia and China use 220-240 volts.

Pumps are also classified according to speed, namely:
Single speed
Dual speed (or 2-speed)
Variable speed

Most domestic pool pumps are single-phase where it uses only single alternating current (AC) with two wires, enough to handle domestic loads. A three-phase system is usually used in industrial applications.

Used pool pumps are not advisable to be used because of its uncertainty and integrity, better to use brand new ones where all information is intact. But if budget is of concern and using old one is inevitable, just make sure the pump is working properly and check whether if the windings had been rewound.

Best Pool Pumps

Our Rating
Pentair 342001 Superflo
Pentair 011018 Intelliflo
Pentair 340039 Superflo
Pentair 011773 Whisperflo

What is a Pool Pump?

Pool pumps are at the heart of every swimming pool’s water flow system. These are the equipment tasked with drawing in water from the pool, passing it through the main filtration system where all water maintenance tasks are carried out before sending the water back to the pool. This basically means that a minor mishap in the functionality of your pool pump will render the cleaning system ineffective and the water will never be filtered properly. Therefore, you have to make sure that you get the perfect pool pump and install it correctly to make sure that your swimming pool water is safe for you.

It’s impossible to discuss the best pool pumps without talking about Hayward. Hayward is a pool equipment manufacturer who’s been in the market for over 80 years. They are well familiarized with the ins and outs of all types of swimming pools and they have the experience, expertise, and resources to meet the needs of these pools.

Therefore, if you are in the market looking for the best pool pumps, Hayward might just have the perfect item for you. But before we get down to the best Hayward pumps, here is some vital information you need to know about pool pumps.

Types of Pool Pumps

  • Single Speed Pumps

Single speed pumps are the most common. Traditionally, pool pumps came with single speed motors but new developments have enabled manufacturers to make pumps with different speeds.

With a single speed pump, there is no option of decreasing or increasing the pumping speed. You can only turn it on and off.

The advantage of these pumps is that they are cheap to acquire. Unfortunately, the operating costs of these pumps are very high because they are not energy efficient. They are also quite noisy.

  • Dual Speed Pumps

As you can already guess, dual pumps come with two speeds. One speed is set pretty high (around 3450 rpm for most pumps) while the other is much lower (approximately 1724 rpm). When you are looking for thorough water filtration, vacuuming or using the pool heater, you can set the pump to operate at a high speed. When you are performing rather basic filtrations, you can switch it to the low-speed option where it doesn’t consume a lot of energy.

The advantage of owning a dual speed pump is they are highly versatile and they also save on energy consumptions compared to the single speed pumps.

The downside is that they are costly and the user has to switch the speeds manually. At certain settings, these pumps can also be very noisy.

  • Variable Speed Pumps

Unlike both single and dual speed pumps which use induction motors, variable speed pool pumps utilize permanent magnet motor which allows the owner to customize the speed. You can adjust the speeds of these pumps to meet the requirements of your unique swimming pool.

Another brilliant thing about these pumps is that they are very energy efficient. The pumps will run the water through the filtration system only when it is required. The pumps are also controlled digitally.

One thing you should know before purchasing a variable speed pump is that they have specific power supply requirements. Most of these pumps are designed to functions with at 230V. You must, therefore, make sure that your pool has the specified power supply in place before installing the pump.

The benefits of having this pump are: it is energy efficient, you can program them to run according to your pool’s needs, they are quieter and very durable. You can also set the speeds of the pump to be adjusted automatically.

The downside is that the initial cost of acquiring one is usually quite high. You may also have to spend some extra cash on improving the power supply in your pool in case it doesn’t meet the requirements of the specific variable speed pump you are buying.

Choosing the right pool pump

Every pool pump in the market comes with different specifications. Even Hayward makes pool pumps with different specs for different clientele. You must, therefore, consider various factors that are unique to your needs to know which particular pump will be the best fit for you.

Here are such factors:

Number of Users

The bigger the number of users in your pool the more frequent you need to maintain it. This means that you need to pump and clean the water more frequently and hence you must get a pump that is up for the task.

Pump Capacity

The volume of the water inside your swimming pool will determine the horsepower necessary for effective pumping. Therefore, you have to calculate the volume of your pool and use it to check out which pumps you can buy.

Noise Output

So many people forget to look at the noise output rating when buying pool pumps and they usually end up with regrets. The last thing you’d want is for your entire compound to become noisy just because there is a pump running in the pool. Make sure that you look at the noise output and try as much as possible to get the quietest pump you can afford.

Compatibility with your disinfectant

Pool Pump is used to circulate water in the swimming pool to replace the dirty water which could be an ideal growth spot for algae and other bacteria. This pump runs through a filtration system to trap debris (mostly sand) that should not be in the water.

What is a Pool Pump
The above-ground pool pump is placed above the ground for safety and against water seepage through the ground, ease of maintenance and operation.
This pump also requires much less energy and control the water flow conveniently as the piping system, valves, and other fittings are exposed from the ground. But this unit has a higher price tag than ordinary pumps or compared to in-ground pumps.

The in-ground pool pump, on the other hand, is cheaper and less elaborate to operate. It has also a filtration system. This pump though needs more energy to pump the water compared to the above-ground pump.

To know what pump to install on your pool, you should know the volume of water that contains the pool reservoir, the flow rate you desire and the frequency of use of your pool. Check out the different types of pool pump as we discuss them here.


Top 6 Best Above Ground Pool Pumps

1) Hayward SP1593 Power-Flo Matrix Above-Ground 1.5-HP Pump with Cord

This product by Hayward has built-in filter (industrial size) primarily designed for above-ground pool. This 1.5-hp pool pump has Noryl impeller with wide opening that prevents clogging. This pump could be used in any weather; even the harshest winter will never freeze the water on the pipes.

Versatile: The pool pump can be used vertically or horizontally in just a push of a button and back to its original position in no time.
Low maintenance: The basket can filter leaves and any debris on its path, so you don’t have to maintain the filter frequently.
Not energy efficient: Though not energy efficient, this pool pump is cheap to acquire and does not need elaborate installation.

2) Blue Wave NE6171B Maxi Replacement Pump for Above Ground Pools, 1.5 HP

This Blue Wave made pool pump comes in energy saving 1.5-hp, with dual port design that could be installed vertically or horizontally. The above-ground pump is designed for 110-volt service and equipped with a 6-ft power cord.
Basically a self-priming pump, you don’t need to fill the suction side to excite the pump. The polymer construction is corrosion proof, last longer than ordinary pumps and with a clear lid for easy maintenance and cleaning.

High-capacity: This pool pump could suck and produce water at 62 gallons per minute, higher than most products.
Powerful and weather-proof: Rated at 3500rpm, this pump could easily empty your pool in no time. It is also weather-proof because of the tight seal. However, a pump of this type is not recommended to be exposed to the elements, its proofing is for unusual conditions.
No filter: The pump comes without filtering system, but most types of filters in the market would fit on its fittings.

3) Hayward Pro Series S210T93S 21-Inch Top-Mount Above Ground Pool Sand Filter System with 1.5-HP Matrix Pump

This 1.5-hp, with proprietary easy to use multi-port valve is a high-performance Pro-Series sand filter pool pump and is ideal for above-ground application. The filter tank is weather-proof, made from durable and tough polymeric material that does not corrode even with prolonged use.

This pump is using an advanced full-flow technology wherein a top diffuser self-cleans the under drain at 360-degree perforated laterals ensuring the equal distribution of sand filtering, this technique makes clogging incidence very remote.

Variable flow: The Variflow valve system has 7-position to choose from depending on situation, unique to this pump, this feature makes flow rate at the maximum without pressure drop.
Heavy pump: Weighing at 77.30lbs., this pump is quiet heavy to move or carry if needed be.

4) Intex Krystal Clear Cartridge Filter Pump for Above Ground Pools, 2500 GPH Pump Flow Rate, 110-120V with GFCI

This 110-120V easy to use pool pump by Intex is for above ground pools which has double insulation, air release valve to discharge trap air pockets inside the filter compartment and is also equipped with GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) breaker to avoid electrocution when abnormal current flow is detected.

The pump has a capacity of 2,500 GPH (42GPM) with a system flow rate of 1,900 GPH keeping your pool water refreshing, crystal clear, absolutely clean and free from algae and other debris.

Low maintenance: The filter chamber is replaceable every two weeks with a new one. Don’t worry, the replacement part is dead cheap, it will not hurt your pocket. However, if the cartridge is undamaged, it could still be used after it is cleaned of debris.
Not advisable to use above 24-feet diameter pool: This pump is not advisable to use for above ground pools having more than 24-feet in diameter. Its use is also prohibited for non-metal frame pools.

5) 2 HP Above Ground Pool Pump Motor, High Performance, with cord

This pump is rated at 115 volts service, 2-hp with 6ft. cord, speed of 3400rpm and 3,000 gallons per hour capacity. This powerful pool pump is the preferred choice for Olympic-sized swimming pools. The heavy-duty pump is best for above-ground installation which is easy and quick, unlike any other conventional pump.
The pump is equipped with an on/ off switch of the Columbia’s PMX pump series, the unit is compatible with other brands’ system.

With HLX basket: The basket is Columbia’s proprietary design strainer that features all that would require on more expensive products of its competitors.
Clear lid: The transparent lid eliminates the perpetual job of guessing whether it is full or not.
Slightly higher power consumer: The high-speed slightly higher rating makes this pump to consume more power than the same products, but this could do the job more efficiently and faster.

My Top Pick

My top pick is by Hayward, specifically this model:

6) Hayward SP1580X15 Power-Flo LX Series 1-1/2-Horsepower Above-Ground Pool Pump with Cord

This 1.5-hp, 115-volt, heavy-duty pool pump comes with strainer, virtually drip-proof, equipped with heat-proof and double-sized seal and comes with extra-large basket that could contain 118 cubic inches of debris. This huge basket enables minimum of pool maintenance and at longer intervals. This also makes this pump a qualified energy-saver.
Primarily designed for the above-ground application, the pump is made from Hayward’s patented PermaGlass XL material that is high-strength and very durable.

• With thermal overload protection: The pump is equipped with a low-resistant thermal overload system that automatically shuts of the operation once the motor detects the abnormal load, keeping it safe.
• Does not come with filter system.

Comparison of Top-Rated Above Ground Pool Pump on the 2019 Market

Comparison Table Of Top Rated Above Ground Pool Pump On The Market
Here’s the full comparison table

Hayward vs Intex Pool Pumps: Which One Is Best For You?
Learn here how to choose between Hayward vs Intex Pool Pumps. And find out which one is best for your pool (either in-ground or above ground).

General Features/ Options

Find out more about the classifications of pool pump and discover the most efficient pool pump as we enumerate them and describe their functions:

• Single-speed

This type of motor runs on either 220 or 120 standard service voltage (for domestic use), the only difference is that it is rated with only one speed (constant speed) that could not be increased or decreased when in operation.
Single speed pool pump has a standard speed of 3,450rpm and the only control you could do is to turn it on and off.
The single-speed pool pump is best to use when you want to empty or fill the pool immediately. This pool pump comes in various power ratings (horsepower) and is extremely effective.

• Dual speed (or 2-speed)

This type of pump has 2 constant speeds rated by the manufacturer. It operates much like the single-speed type only that this type has high and low speeds. Low speed is usually set at 1725 rpm and double that is the high speed (that is, 3450 rpm).

To achieve this condition, a toggle switch or frequency inverter is used. The latter though is expensive and usually use for high capacity motor or for industrial use (three-phase connection). The toggle switch is the preferred choice for home use but may entail a huge investment and higher power consumption in the long run.

The low-speed is used for basic functions, such as circulation and filtration. The high-speed condition is usually used for emptying the pool, when running simultaneously with swimming pool heaters and other activities concerning the pool which requires more power.

• Variable speed

This a very flexible type of pool pump where it can be adjusted precisely to the desired speed that you may prefer or the speed needed to achieve a certain task regarding your swimming pool.

The variable speed pool pump is the type that has multiple speeds, meaning you have the option to choose the precise speed needed or the job (manufacturers have standard multiple speeds settings). Compared to single speed and 2-speed, variable speed pool pump is more economical.

Standard family size pool has 25,000 gallons of water, emptying/ filtering this for maintenance using a 2-hp single-speed or 2-speed pump running at 3450rpm and pumping almost 60 gallons per minute, it would take about 6 hours; the pump would consume about 12,000 watts of power on that period.

On the other hand, using a variable speed pump at lower power and speed, say 1.5-hp pool pump at only 1200 rpm (almost 22 gallons per minute) could take 18 to 19 hours pumping out the same pool. But it would only consume 2,000 watts of power, a very big savings for pool owners.

Things to Consider in Choosing the Best Pool Pump

There are certainly many things to consider when choosing the best pool pump.

Here is some of the list; we say that the last decision is still with you:
• Know what the size of your pool (volume of water, etc.)
• Know how many users
• Know the frequency of cleaning/ maintenance
• Know the flow rate you desire
• Consider the price

Knowing all of the above will certainly lead you to the best pool pump in the market. The volume of water of your pool will give you a hint on what horsepower to use.

Standard domestic pools use between 1 to 2-hp. If you are reluctant to choose a 1-hp motor, you are free to choose the next unit size which is 1.5-hp if you believe that it is enough for the job.

The numbers of users, but with standard size pool, certainly have an effect on the maintenance. The many the users, the frequent is the maintenance which means cleaning or pumping out the water to replace it with new one. A pool pump with 2-hp and a single-speed is right for the job if you want constant speed and you want the pumping quickly.
In cases you are inclined to do the maintenance in two steps (say low and high setting), but not as frequent as the first case, you may opt for a 2-speed pool pump, which is great for intermittent service. This pump is also best when using swimming pool heaters.

swimming pool heaters
Solar Pool Heaters. Source: SwimUniversity

For large pools with lots of users and debris (like sand) is heavy, you certainly need also the “heavyweight” of pool pumps: the variable speed pool pump. This pump works in various ways; it sucks pumps and filters the water in different speed. The operation maybe elaborate, but the result is more than satisfactory.

The last thing to consider is the price. There are truly high-end pool pumps but inferior in quality than low-priced one. The best is to consult reviews like this and read more! Consider what your needs are first, and then decide for the price if it fits your needs.

When using new pump (whether single, dual or variable speeds), homeowners should be trained in knowing the pumps functions, capabilities, operation, maintenance, programming (if any), and potential risks associated with the new pump.

Additionally, the users should also be educated on the signs of possibly unclean pool and give them knowledge and information to maintain healthy swimming environment.

The final step in installing/ mounting this type of pump is to know precisely the energy use of the new pump and compare this with the findings when measuring the energy used of the old pump. The comparison will guide the users to better understanding of the optimum pump use and the savings it could entail.

Best Pentair Pool Pump Reviews and Buying Guide 2017
Learn here more about Pentair pool pump and Pentair pumps that are now the current craze in the market. Discover also how easy it is to choose the right one for your lovely pool, only here.

Verdict/ Conclusion

Choosing the top rated pool pump for your swimming pool is really a difficult task. This pool pump reviews will surely make your decision much easy and convenient.
The most efficient pool pump really depends to how it should be applied and use. Most users have different applications that need a different approach.

If the frequency of using the pool is every day, the pool pump should be tough enough to handle everyday utilization without overheating or overloading the motor. The size of the pool (small, medium or large) is another factor. If yours is small enough for a family of 5, a single speed pool pump is more practical.
If you want intermittent service pump and in tandem with another machine (like swimming pool heaters, etc.), the 2-speed should be used.

For swimming pools where more than the family is expected to use, the ideal to use is the variable speed pool pump. Although this pump has elaborate operation and installation and has expensive initial cost, it is highly reliable, tough and last longer than the single and dual speed models even if used frequently.

Again we say this guide is merely to give you an idea on how to choose the best pool pump for your use: read your situations and decide for the best.

Top 6 Best Pool Pumps

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